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ACS Victoria - A Year in Review (2013)

Friday, 13 Dec 2013

As 2013 draws to a close, we reflect on not only how fast the year has gone but also how extremely proud we can be of the achievements of the ACS and the Victorian Branch over this period. Amongst the many achievements, the Society continues to strive to be more accessible and relevant to a greater range of people working in ICT. 

Locally, some of the new initiatives and activities include:

  • Hosted over 150 events including SIGs, Branch Forums, Professional Development, breakfast functions and meeting which were attended by over 3300 members;
  • The implementation of new ACS Membership and Certification Information Sessions – targeted at new members and existing members alike;
  • Connecting with rural members – i.e. the initiation of the Ballarat IT in the Pub events;
  •  The new IT Programme Management SIG, convened by Cecily Macdougall;
  • Scholarships were awarded to three ACS Members, Amit Bhandari, Neil Roberts and Trevor Kistan, to participate in the CIO Pathways Program.

We continue to engage meaningfully on behalf of our members with Government and have during 2013 achieved a number of milestones in our ongoing commitment to supporting the Victorian Government ICT Strategy implementation including:

  • Responding to the draft Victorian Government ICT Strategy and being a sounding board for its regular refresh
  • Gaining appointment to the recently formed Victorian division of Digital Futures program driving key elements of Skills policy both locally and nationally
  • Participation on (VICTAC) Victorian ICT Advisory Committee - Skills subcommittee and supporting ICT Strategy actions.
  • Introducing Victorian Government to the Skills Framework for the Information Age (SFIA)
  • Information Age leadership articles were published on the: 
    •  Ministers Minister Gordon Rich-Phillips release of the ICT Strategy – March/April 2013, ‘Victorian  Government rewires its approach to ICT’, 
    • Deputy Secretary DSDBI Grantly Mailes interview on first 100 days in role and challenges ahead – May/June 2013, ‘In the hot seat’.
    • Deputy Secretary DEPI Bruce Thompson first 100 days in transitioning from his former CIO role – December/January 2013-14, yet to be released.

We look forward to an active year in 2014 in the Policy and Government relation arena with continued strong support for Government relationships and policy support whilst providing a voice for our members in planning for the future of ICT in the state of Victoria.

ACS Victoria hosted the State iAwards in June in collaboration with AIIA Victoria and the Pearcey Foundation. The National iAwards were held in Melbourne in August with special guests; Senator the Honrourable Kate Lundy, and Craig Ondarchie, the Victorian Government Parliamentary Secretary to the Premier. The gala event attracted some 700 industry leaders from across the country. The iAwards honours both companies at the cutting edge of technology innovation as well as leading professionals across the industry. Most importantly, the iAwards honours the achievements of home-grown Australian innovators. The State Government of Victoria has signed a five year agreement with the host organisations to provide lead sponsorship at the iAwards, therefore confirming the National event will continue to be held in Victoria for the next five years.

The Victorian winners of the Individual Categories were;

  • ICT Educator of the Year – Professor Frada Burstein  
  • ICT Professional of the Year – Dr Rod Dilnutt  
  • ICT Woman of the Year – Chris Skipper-Conway
  • ICT CIO of the Year – Susan Sly

Congratulations to Dr Rod Dilnutt and Susan Sly, who then both went on to win the National Awards for their individual categories.

ACS has as its core mission the advancement of professional excellence in information technology. A Fellow is the highest grade of membership in the ACS, and is one of the formal ways in which the ACS can recognize an outstanding contribution to the development of ICT in Australia. In 2013 the Fellows Honour was awarded to Michelle Beveridge, whom is also the incoming Chairman of the 2014 Branch Executive Committee (BEC).

Honorary Membership is our way of recognising the significant contribution of individuals to the ICT industry and particular to those who help us promote the development of Australian resources. This year, we acknowledged The Hon. Gordon Rich-Phillips, MLC, Minister for Technology, Grantly Mailes, Chief Technology Advocate, and Deputy Secretary, DSDBI and Jurij Semkiw, founder of the Victorian Computer Society which evolved to become the Australian Computer Society as Honorary Members of the Victorian Branch.

Within the Branch we announced the departure Daphne Kechagias, Member Services and Events Manager, and Matthew Pedron, our Sales and Account Manager. Natassja Cooper stepped up into the role of Member Services and Events Manager, and recruitment has begun for the Sales and Account Manager position, which will hopefully be filled in the New Year. This year we also welcomed T’arne Whelan as our new Member Services and Events Coordinator, who will work closely in the Branch with our existing Coordinator, Sabina Gruetzner.

This year also saw changes in the incoming 2014 Victorian Branch Executive Committee (BEC), and also within the Management Committee at the national level. Brenda Aynsley was successfully elected by the ACS Congress as the new President of our Society for the 2014-2016 term. Brenda will commence her Presidency on 1 January 2014.

Elections for the 2014 Victorian BEC were held in October/November, with the following positions filled:

Chairman: Michelle Beveridge
Vice-Chairman: Adrian Porteous
Secretary: John Graham
Treasurer: Jo Dalvean
Immediate Past Chairman: Ian Dennis

Ordinary Committee Members
Anastasia Li
Andrew Parbury
Craig Horne
Fiona Teakle
Ian Wells
Josephine Too
Mehrnoush Salehpour
Nicholas Reynolds
Rod Dilnutt
Roland Padilla

We would like to extend our most sincere thanks to our Professional Partners, Special Interest Group Convenors, State Board Members and the Victorian Branch for their ongoing commitment and contribution to the Society. Our many achievements and initiatives would not be possible without their continued hard work, support and dedication.

On behalf of the Victorian Board and the Victorian Branch, we wish you our Members, a Happy and Safe Festive Season and a Prosperous New Year. 

Ian Dennis, Chairman, ACS Victoria and Ksenija Catic, State Manager, ACS Victoria

Please note: All offices of the ACS will be closed from Friday 20 December and will reopen on Monday 13 January 2014.